What does it mean to be the best in the world at what you do? After reading and re-reading Seth Godin’s little book called The Dip, I’m still pondering his simple statement. As with all elegantly simple things, it is far from easy.
I’ve never understood celebrity fascination and worship. They’re just people who have done things a little differently than the thousands or millions of others who would like to be them. This doesn’t mean I don’t have a healthy amount of respect for those who have gone the extra mile. Respect is not worship.
What bothers me about all this celebrity hype is when people expect that kind of success without understanding or being willing to do what is necessary to achieve it. They want to look, do and talk the public part, but actually acting it is a whole different thing. So what can these people do differently and not just be wanna be’s?
As former Dallas Cowboys badass and commercial real estate mogul Roger Staubach points out, it’s all about putting in a little more effort than other people are willing to. It’s all about that extra mile. Talent won’t get you there, though it helps.
I’ve had the pleasure of meet Roger a couple of times and his story is not one of immediate fame and fortune. After winning the Heisman at the Naval Academy, he fulfilled his commitment by serving four years in the Navy and returning to football as a 27 year-old rookie for the Dallas Cowboys. From there he worked hard to earn his place as the Comeback Kid. He refused to give up which is part of what made fans love him.
What a lot of people don’t realize is that he didn’t take the off season off. He sold insurance, then commercial real estate to help support his growing family. He built one of the largest commercial real estate practices in Texas and helped revolutionize the industry. Lucky for us the Comeback Kid was not a one hit wonder.
I believe his dedication to going the extra mile in everything he does is what led him to being the best in the world at not one thing, but two.
What mile are you not running?